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February 22, 2009

New Benedictine Saint!!!

Blessed Bernardo Tolomei, OSB (1272 - 1348)
VATICAN CITY, FEB. 16, 2009 (Zenit.org).- The Church will soon have 10 more canonized saints.

The Holy See reported that a public consistory of cardinals will take place Saturday to determine dates for the canonization celebrations of the newly recognized saints. Among the group is Father Damián de Veuster, known as the apostle of the lepers of Molokai, Hawaii.

The 10 to be canonized are:

-- Blessed Zygmunt Szcesny Felinski, former Polish archbishop of Warsaw and founder of the Congregation of Franciscan Sisters of the Family of Mary.
-- Blessed Arcangelo Tadini, Italian priest and founder of the Congregation of the Worker Sisters of the Holy House of Nazareth.
-- Blessed Francisco Coll y Guitart, Spanish Dominican priest and founder of the Congregation of the Dominican Sisters of the Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

-- Blessed Jozef Damien de Veuster, Belgian priest of the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary, and of the Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar. The decree recognizing the miracle was approved July 3, 2008.
-- Blessed Bernardo Tolomei, Italian abbot and founder of the Congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto. The decree recognizing the miracle was adopted on July 3, 2008.

-- Blessed Rafael Arnáiz Barón, Spanish oblate friar of the Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance.

-- Blessed Nuno de Santa Maria Álvares Pereira, Portuguese religious of the Order of Friars of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel. The decree recognizing the miracle was adopted on July 3, 2008.
-- Blessed Gertrude Caterina Comensoli, Italian founder of the Institute of Sisters of the Blessed Sacrament. The decree recognizing the miracle was adopted on March 17, 2008.

-- Blessed Marie de la Croix (born Jeanne) Jugan, French founder of the Congregation of the Little Sisters of the Poor.
-- Blessed Caterina Volpicelli, Italian foundress of the Institute of Handmaidens of the Sacred Heart.

More about the soon to be Saint:

Blessed Bernardo Tolomei (1272 - 1348) was an Italian theologian, the founder of the Roman Catholic Congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto. In the Roman Martyrology he is commemorated on August 20,[1] but in the Benedictine calendar his optional memorial is celebrated on the previous day. Blessed Bernardo Tolomei is due to be canonized by Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday, April 26, 2009.
Giovanni Tolomei was born at Siena in Tuscany. He took the name of "Bernard" (in its Italian form Bernardo) out of admiration for the saintly Abbot of Clairvaux. He was educated by his uncle, Christopher Tolomeo, a Dominican, and desired to enter the religious life, but his father's opposition prevented him from doing so, and he continued his studies in secular surroundings. After a course in philosophy and mathematics he devoted himself to the study of civil and canon law, and of theology. For a time Bernardo served in the armies of Rudolph I of Germany. After his return to Siena he was appointed by his fellow citizens to the highest positions in the town government. While thus occupied he was struck with blindness. Having recovered his sight, this being attributed to the intervention of the Blessed Virgin Mary, he retired (1313) to a solitary spot about ten miles from Siena, where he led a life of the greatest austerity.
The fame of his virtues soon attracted many visitors, and Bernardo was accused of heresy. He went to Avignon and cleared himself of this charge before Pope John XXII without difficulty. Upon his return he founded the congregation of the Blessed Virgin of Monte Oliveto (the Olivetans), giving it the Rule of St. Benedict. The purpose of the new religious institute was a special devotion to the Blessed Virgin. Guido, Bishop of Arezzo, within whose diocese the congregation was formed, confirmed its constitution in (1319), and many favours were granted by Popes John XXII, Clement VI (1344), and Gregory XI. Upon the appearance of the plague in the district of Arezzo, Bernardo and his monks devoted themselves to the care of the sick. As a result of this charitable act, Bernardo and a number of his Olivetian confreres themselves succumbed to the ravages of the plague.
After having ruled the religious body he had founded for 27 years Bernardo died, at the age of 76. His death was followed by many miracles and the congregation became a nursery of saints. In 1634 he was beatified by the Congregation of Rites, but is often referred to as Saint Bernardo.

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